As the NFT market surges in the new year, including more than $1.4 billion in trading volume at leading marketplace OpenSea in less than a week, a new trend is taking hold: bulk buying. It’s thanks to Genie, an Ethereum NFT market aggregation tool designed to bundle together purchases to save on gas fees (the variable cost of transacting on the network) and time while avoiding reactive market shifts.
Launched in November, Genie lets NFT collectors buy up to 60 NFTs at once from multiple marketplaces—including OpenSea, Rarible, and NFTX—in a single transaction. Depending on the size of the transaction, buyers could save potentially hundreds of dollars on Ethereum gas fees as opposed to buying each NFT individually, plus it cuts out a lot of hassle.
It’s gaining steam too. On January 2, Genie founder Scott Gray tweeted that the app was responsible for $25 million (6,674 ETH) worth of Ethereum trading volume the previous week—an increase of more than 50% over the previous weekly high. Genie may be enticing major collectors and Ethereum whales to buy in bulk when they see an investment opportunity.
Entrepreneur and NFT enthusiast Gary Vaynerchuk has tweeted about using Genie to buy up batches of NFTs, for example. And this week, noted NFT collector Pranksy tweeted that he was “[showing] some conviction in my NFT purchases” by using Genie to buy up hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of NFTs in the popular Doodles profile picture collection.
It was about time I showed some conviction in my #NFT purchases, remind me in 1 year @doodles @geniexyz pic.twitter.com/0Scuo0ra5R
— Pranksy 📦 (@pranksy) January 5, 2022
“What we're seeing with Genie is that we’re maybe even exponentially growing other marketplaces’ trading volumes, because now we're adding on this batch buying,” Gray told Decrypt. “Markets are able to become more efficient and move a lot faster than before.”
Genie also provides a potential strategic advantage as well. In the fast-moving NFT market, top collectors’ purchasing habits and wallet movements are continually being watched for new trends. It’s the basis of NFT analytics platform Nansen’s “smart money” feature, for example. A major collector buying into or “sweeping the floor” (buying a bunch of the lowest-priced NFTs) of a collection often spurs a wave of subsequent sales and rising prices in the marketplace.
In other words, if a notable collector wants to buy a dozen NFTs from a project, then there’s a good chance that the prices will jump—or the desired NFTs will be purchased by others—before he or she can complete all of the planned purchases. With Genie, buyers can execute a batch purchase before the market catches on to their strategy.
“Now the big whales can put their conviction at stake and get their allocation sooner,” Gray explained. “For users that are not whales, but are really interested in the ecosystem—if they see something that they really like, now they can make a big bet for cheaper and [...] without getting front-run by these other whales.”
In other words, it’s “democratizing the broom” for sweeping NFT collections, Gray said. Big bulk purchases of Doodles or Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs will draw tweets and headlines, but Genie can also be used for buying into newer, less popular, and cheaper collections as well. And again, major sales in a collection tend to beget even more purchases from others.
Genie is probably a MASSIVE reason why are seeing so much volume on OpenSea. Nobody in their right mind would buy all these NFTs one by one on there, huge shoutout to @geniexyz! 🧞♂️🧹
— Farokh.ethᵍᵐ (@farokh) January 5, 2022
All told, Genie has helped generate more than $125 million worth of NFT trading volume to date (including during pre-launch beta testing), with more than 10,000 users thus far—and both tallies have risen rapidly over the last couple of weeks.
Right now, Genie isn’t making any money from trades, but Gray said that they’re working on raising funding. The project’s roadmap includes smart contract optimizations, a way for artists to showcase their created NFTs across platforms, and a more marketplace-like look and feel for the interface. Although Genie’s bulk-buying Swap feature has generated the most attention, it also currently lets users list NFTs for sale across multiple marketplaces.
Ultimately, Gray envisions Genie becoming more broadly useful as an aggregator for all kinds of NFT purchases—not just in bulk—as more marketplaces spin up, such as Coinbase’s upcoming platform. Nifty Gateway recently moved towards aggregation of other marketplaces and Rarible started doing the same, but Genie still sees ripe opportunity in the space.
“Right now, Genie is used for batch buying,” he said. “But as marketplace liquidity becomes more fragmented over time, an aggregator becomes increasingly more important.”